Military members and their spouses face special challenges during divorce. Although the laws governing divorce are the same for military and non-military couples, military divorce involves additional factors that can complicate the process. As an example, if one spouse is on active duty and stationed overseas, the divorce could take a significant amount of time. If you need a divorce lawyer based in Maryland, Evan Koslow can help you to obtain a fair divorce settlement.
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If there has been 20 years of marriage overlapping 20 years of military service, a former spouse who has not remarried may qualify for full medical benefits as a “20/20/20 spouse.” A former spouse who has been married for 15 years, with 10 years overlapping the 20 years of service or even 10 years of marriage with all 10 years overlapping with the military service can receive some partial medical benefits, as well.
“Mr. Koslow went above and beyond in assisting us and walking us step by step through this very difficult process. He was understanding, supportive and caring. His expertise and dedication were unsurpassed. He is professional, considerate and knowledgeable.”
Military pensions and retired pay are two of the most complicated issues related to military divorce. Military retired pay is one of the best retirement benefits programs in the United States. You can begin collecting retired pay at the age of 37 and retirement benefits can grow each year as your living expenses increase. During a divorce, military retired may be subject to division – just like any other financial asset or debt. However, these divorce cases can take a great deal of time to resolve because military retirement plans are so valuable.
Military retired pay is considered marital property under the Uniformed Services Former Spouse Protection Act (USFSPA). According to the USFSPA, a service member’s “disposable retired pay” includes his/her military retired pay, minus applicable deductions. The USFSPA can allow the court to distribute the military retired pay in the same manner that it would divide a civil pension plan. This does not mean that the military member’s spouse will automatically receive any of the retirement. Instead, it allows he spouse to seek a portion of the retirement. Then, the spouse will seek a percentage of the retired pay.
Divorce and Military Survivor Benefit Plans
Some former spouses can receive Survivor Benefit Plan (SBP) money as well. Generally speaking, SBPs are provided so that military members can provide for their families and loved ones after they die. Under certain circumstances, ex-spouses can remain enrolled in SBPs. However, the military member must choose to continue the spouse’s enrollment. Enrollment is usually terminated automatically after a divorce. If the service member is allowed to select a beneficiary at retirement, he/she may choose a former spouse.
The Koslow Law Firm is dedicated to helping clients deal with complicated military divorces. We are confident in our ability to be your advocate. Are you worried about exorbitant attorney’s fees? We offer high-quality legal representation at a reasonable cost. With our flexible payment plans, our team can help you obtain the fair divorce settlement that you need and deserve, without creating a heavy financial burden. Attorney Evan Koslow provides personalized legal representation and always strives to know his clients on a personal level.